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LIGHTROOM + SONY A7sii [Problem with RAW image handling]

Community Beginner ,
Feb 01, 2018

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Brutal.

I recently switched from shooting Canon to Sony (mainly for video) but did not realize there would be such a major issue when attempting to import and work with RAW (ARW) files. Here's how it went down:

1. Snapped a few stills for headshots on a shoot. Previews looked good. 2. Imported them into Lightroom (as I've done countless times the same way shooting Canon), with thumbnails initially loading the same as previewed on the camera, until... Lightroom automatically adjusts settings dramatically darkening the images to a point where they're non-legible.

3. After many attempts and reattempts, including searching for those with similar issues, I worked with the images as best I could, exporting at the highest quality setting possible, but with the final file being a fraction (2-3MB) of the size of the original (25MB).

SO disappointing.

While I am hopeful that there is a quick fix to this issue, I was not able to find it in searching out other people's attempts to fix a similar issue.

Is there anyone here who may be able to help shed some light on this, please?

Sincerely,
Caleb

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LIGHTROOM + SONY A7sii [Problem with RAW image handling]

Community Beginner ,
Feb 01, 2018

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Brutal.

I recently switched from shooting Canon to Sony (mainly for video) but did not realize there would be such a major issue when attempting to import and work with RAW (ARW) files. Here's how it went down:

1. Snapped a few stills for headshots on a shoot. Previews looked good. 2. Imported them into Lightroom (as I've done countless times the same way shooting Canon), with thumbnails initially loading the same as previewed on the camera, until... Lightroom automatically adjusts settings dramatically darkening the images to a point where they're non-legible.

3. After many attempts and reattempts, including searching for those with similar issues, I worked with the images as best I could, exporting at the highest quality setting possible, but with the final file being a fraction (2-3MB) of the size of the original (25MB).

SO disappointing.

While I am hopeful that there is a quick fix to this issue, I was not able to find it in searching out other people's attempts to fix a similar issue.

Is there anyone here who may be able to help shed some light on this, please?

Sincerely,
Caleb

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Feb 01, 2018 1
Adobe Community Professional ,
Feb 02, 2018

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Darkening Images:

  Check a couple of things-

In the Import dialog check that Develop Settings in the [Apply During Import] are set to "None"

ScreenShot109.jpg

Also you could try resetting the Defaults- Select an ARW file in the Develop module, go Menu > Develop > Set Default Settings and click the button- [Restore Adobe Default Settings]. (This will influence all future imports)

ScreenShot108.jpg

Export Quality:

What are your export dialog settings?  A screen-clip of the file-type and resize settings might help achieving an answer.

If exporting to JPG, then- Image detail Content, Compression Quality, and Bit reduction (16>8) will ALWAYS create a variable sized smaller file. (MBs)

Regards. My System: Lr-Classic 10.0, Photoshop 22.0, Lightroom 4.0, Windows-10. Nikon DSLR.

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Feb 02, 2018 2
LEGEND ,
Feb 02, 2018

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3. After many attempts and reattempts, including searching for those with similar issues, I worked with the images as best I could, exporting at the highest quality setting possible, but with the final file being a fraction (2-3MB) of the size of the original (25MB).

There's nothing wrong with a 25MB raw being exported at 3MB. That's typical, because JPG is a compression technology, and some image can be highly compressed without noticeably loss in quality. Did you actually look at the exported photos to see if this appeared to be a high quality image? That's really the only way you can tell. For more information, please read Jeffrey Friedl's Blog » An Analysis of Lightroom JPEG Export Quality Settings

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Feb 02, 2018 2
Community Beginner ,
Feb 02, 2018

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Thank-you for the responses.

I'm attaching a couple screenshots (referencing what was mentioned to try).

I did select "Restore Adobe Default Settings" (noting interestingly that the Sony ILCE-7SM2 information came up -- which, I'm not sure what that is for if the camera is a Sony A7Sii, perhaps this is the issue?).
Screen Shot 2018-02-02 at 10.48.25 AM.png
In terms of export settings, here is the screenshot for what I've used. Again, having reset the above, and
Screen Shot 2018-02-02 at 10.50.56 AM.png

Having reset the settings, I re-imported a single image and will include the issue that appears visually as it's imported below.

First, the thumbnail that appears (looking similar to what appears in the camera).

Screen Shot 2018-02-02 at 11.05.15 AM.png

Second, a look at when the import first begins (for about 2 seconds, again, similar to the camera preview).
Screen Shot 2018-02-02 at 11.05.25 AM.png

Then finally, the distortion that takes place.
Screen Shot 2018-02-02 at 11.05.29 AM.png

Has anyone had a similar issue with the Sony A7s camera?

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Feb 02, 2018 0
LEGEND ,
Feb 02, 2018

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This is perfectly normal Lightroom behavior at Import.

When you import a RAW, first Lightroom shows you the embedded JPG preview in the file; then after a few seconds it has time to render the RAW, and this is shown to you and it looks different than the JPG preview. Why does it look different? Because the JPG has been processed in the camera, while the RAW has not been processed (or has your presets applied to it).

There is no way to turn this off, as it is working as designed.

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Feb 02, 2018 2
Adobe Community Professional ,
Feb 02, 2018

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The size of the export in this instance sounds about right. A lot of the image is practically black with no detail whatsoever. Did you try to do any adjustment to the image at all before you exported? It's difficult to judge because you didn't show any histogram or anything of what you did in Lightroom, if anything. If this is just a simple import/export, I wouldn't be too panicked yet.

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Feb 02, 2018 2
Community Beginner ,
Feb 02, 2018

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Okay, appreciate the responses. Thank-you.

I'm still unclear as to why Lightroom would be interpreting the RAW file so differently than the preview, compared to how any of the Canon (or iPhone) imports would look before/after being imported.

That said, here is the finished edit:

MUSICFEST 2018 - BOARD HEADSHOTS & GROUP -00830.jpg

After running the edit, I uninstalled/re-installed Lightroom and created an entirely new Library with hopes there may have been a setting or update issue -- so, the histogram for this image is not available.

**** Assume that Lightroom is working completely normally here ***

If the above assumption is correct than my issue is likely ignorance on my part with regards to my camera settings/shooting technique. I say this because the amount of grain/noise that seemed present in these shots were much more than I expected.

As I recall, the shot was with a SLR Magic CINE 1.4 75mm, shooting at about 2.8, as I'm new to the camera I shot the stills with settings that were offering a preview that looked acceptable. The ISO was on an auto setting that I didn't think would be an issue. I now wonder if this was my problem (see image below, it suggests ISO was at 2000, which seems crazy to me given how dark it appears in the import, but perhaps has something to do with the grain).

Screen Shot 2018-02-02 at 1.38.48 PM.png

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Feb 02, 2018 0
Adobe Community Professional ,
Feb 02, 2018

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welcomeheaven  wrote

I'm still unclear as to why Lightroom would be interpreting the RAW file so differently than the preview, compared to how any of the Canon (or iPhone) imports would look before/after being imported.

This can occur when using in-camera settings that are normally applied to the JPEG image file, but NOT to the raw file. Sony cameras have a setting called DRO (Dynamic Range Optimizer) that adjusts the contrast and exposure to extend the image dynamic range. Since LR knows nothing about this setting it can't apply the appropriate corrections that would normally be done using Sony's raw editor software. Check your camera settings and make sure the DRO setting is set to OFF and not AUTO or ON. I'm not familiar with Sony cameras so there may be other settings that have a similar affect. Check your camera manual! In addition try changing the LR Camera Calibration profile setting to 'Camera Standard,' which provides rendering closer to the in-camera JPEG 'Standard' picture style.

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Feb 02, 2018 2
Community Beginner ,
Feb 02, 2018

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Thank-you. I don't have the camera with me today to try, but I will look to address both the in-camera DRO as well as do a thorough manual walkthrough.

To everyone who's responded, thank-you. This was my first time posting in a forum looking for help, and I have been thoroughly encouraged by the detailed and timely responses.

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Feb 02, 2018 0
New Here ,
May 01, 2020

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Even i have the same problem it's been 2 year now of me switched to A7sII and i get used to it and what fixed i found for this is reduse the contrast and then regain it in curve this what i do for last 2 year and i think this is the best you can do as there is no fix for this yet 

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May 01, 2020 1
New Here ,
May 25, 2020

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I have been having this issue in Bridge. It just started three weeks ago, and is driving me crazy. Prior to this the Sony ARW files would be flat and I would edit them, and the jpgs would be saturated and bright. Now it is the opposite. Maybe I have been viewing Sony ARW files wrong all this time? Everyone I know overseas that I work with edits pictures the same way....are all of us just ignorant?

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May 25, 2020 0
Adobe Community Professional ,
May 01, 2020

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I can see where "adobe standard" may not be the best profile to choose. Do any of the other camera profiles help as a base starting point?

 

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May 01, 2020 0